Critics: LIPA oversight bill needs more power

GARDEN CITY - While state lawmakers consider a bill that aims to bring the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) under state oversight, critics say they think the bill doesn't go far enough. The LIPA Oversight and Accountability Act was passed by the state Assembly last night and is headed to the Senate for a vote. It would allow the state to conduct audits of LIPA's rates and operations, and would let customers address complaints with the state's Consumer Protection Agency, instead of with LIPA itself. Critics say they prefer an earlier bill that included a measure requiring LIPA to get state approval for excessive rate increases. However, Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.) says he's opposed to such strict oversight because it could lower LIPA's bond rating. Some Long Islanders say customers need to be protected because they have no other options for power.LIPA oversight bill clears hurdle in AssemblyNew bill targets LIPA rate hikes

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